After 14 years of owning ClearView EyeCare in Medicine Hat, Kerrie Snider was faced with a large number of challenges when COVID-19 caused a world-wide pandemic. She was forced to close her business for seven weeks and, like many other small business owners, was unsure of how she would be impacted more in the future.
As businesses started opening their doors again, Snider applied for the MHBIG offered by Community Futures Entre-Corp. In order for her to feel comfortable inviting clients into her space to try on glasses and attend appointments, Snider wanted to renovate her location to be more spacious.
“I knew I’d use the grant to renovate my eyewear dispensary, so we got some quotes from a local cabinet company, Design Kitchens, and they helped me design my new layout,” says Snider. “They also helped me with interior design paint choices, and Creative Floor Coverings did my carpet. After that, I filled out the application, submitted the quotes, and we were approved.”
The new renovations allow for Snider’s clients to safely socially distance while trying on new eyewear. She also received more cleaning supplies to ensure everything is carefully and extensively sanitized before being placed back on the display. She also connected with local business Botanicals to add fresh greenery and plants to the space.
“This grant is imperative for Medicine Hat’s economy, and it’s really encouraging when there’s grants available to help small business owners make it through difficult times,” says Snider. “I’ve mentioned working with a few local businesses, because I live and work here and want to support other small businesses in Medicine Hat. I’m proud that our city is made up of so many small businesses and honoured to be a part of that.”
Snider knew as soon as she graduated highschool that she wanted to be an optometrist, and six months after graduating university she opened ClearView EyeCare. She and her team specialize in regular eye exams, eye disease management, laser eye surgery referrals and follow-ups, dry eye treatments and has a full eyewear dispensary with frames, lens’, glasses, sunglasses, and contacts.
Snider works with clients from six months old to 100 years old. The team of five at ClearView EyeCare is always accepting new clients and families.
“I like that optometry is primary health care. People are coming in for routine exams, and we have time to help them understand their condition and what’s going on. We really get to know our patients and help them find solutions specifically for their needs, and that is very satisfying for our team,” says Snider.
ClearView EyeCare can be found online at https://optometristmedicinehat.com/.